DGS: Digital Graphic Segregation in a Russian Ichthyosaur – Fischer et al. 2013

I didn’t invent this.
I’m simply promoting DGS whether done by my hand or others. In this case Fischer et al. 2013 did a great job of delineating bones in their Russian ichthyosaur skull (Fig. 1).

They started with a photograph of Leninia stellans, then traced it. The process of tracing and coloring to segregate bones actually helps the human mind to figure out difficult sutures. That’s the value of color-coding the bones as done here (Fig. 1).

Figure 1. Russian ichthyosaur skull color coded using DGS to illustrate bone dimensions and sutures.

Figure 1. Russian ichthyosaur skull color coded using DGS to illustrate bone dimensions and sutures. All fossils could benefit from this technique. Much better than simple arrows without suture lines. The upper temporal fenestra are not absent. They are situated low behind the postfrontal and supratemporal and visible in dorsal view.

Right or wrong,
I think there can be no clearer way to show the bone interpretations than this. The paper includes top and occipital views using the same technique.

DGS has value. It should be widely used. Those who dismiss this technique need to show a reason why this doesn’t work.

References
Fischer V, Arkhangelsky MS, Uspensky GN, Stenshin IM and Godefroit P 2013. A new Lower Cretaceous ichthyosaur from Russia reveals skull shape conservatism within Ophthalmosaurinae. Geological Magazine 1-11 .pdf

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